Batting records tumble as Test heads for draw

South Africa were 131 for one in their second innings at close on the fourth day of the first Test against India on Saturday.

updated: April 15, 2008 12:15 IST
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New Delhi:

South Africa dominated day four of the opening Test against India as the match drifted toward a draw amid a series of batting records.

South Africa claimed nine wickets in the first two sessions to dismiss India for 627 and restrict the first-innings deficit to 87 runs. Then Neil McKenzie hit an unbeaten 59 to steer the tourists to 131-1 in its second innings at stumps.

In their second essay, South African openers Graeme Smith (35) and Neil McKenzie began with a flourish, just like they had done in the first innings.

They scored at a brisk rate, five per over, to forge a half century stand before Harbhajan snapped the partnership by trapping the South African skipper in the 11th over.

Second session

Rahul Dravid struck 111 for his 25th Test hundred.

Fast bowler Dale Steyn grabbed four of the last five wickets to bowl out India for 627 at tea in reply to South Africa's 540 all out.

India lost the last five wickets for 29 runs.

Dravid hit 15 fours on his way to becoming the sixth batsman to tally 10,000 Test runs, the third Indian to do so after Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar.

Dale Steyn was the pick of the South African bowlers, claiming four wickets for 103 runs.

First session

Virender Sehwag could not break Brian Lara's world record but Rahul Dravid joined the 10,000 Test run club as India overhauled South Africa's first innings total and took a seven-run lead at lunch on day four of the first cricket Test on Saturday.

India were 547 for four at the lunch break, with Dravid on 99 (269b, 13X4) and VVS Laxman on six at the crease.

Rahul Dravid becomes only the third Indian to score 10,000 Test runs, Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar are the other Indians who have scored 10,000 Test runs.

Dravid reached the mark when he made 80 not out in the first innings early on the fourth day, becoming the third Indian to achieve the feat after Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar.

The 35-year-old batsman flicked paceman Mornie Morkel to midwicket for a single to reach the milestone.

Sachin Tendulkar gone for zero.

Virender Sehwag was finally out for 319 - his, and India's, second triple century - when he was caught by Neil McKenzie off fast bowler Makhaya Ntini on the fourth and penultimate day of the first Test against South Africa on Saturday.

The 29-year-old improved his own Indian record for the highest test score of 309, but failed to break the world record of 400 not out held by West Indies batsman Brian Lara.

Sehwag, who had scored India's first Test triple century against Pakistan in Multan in 2004, batted for 531 minutes, faced 304 balls and smashed 42 boundaries and five sixes at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium for the highest Test score ever by an Indian.

Sehwag joined Australian Don Bradman and Lara as the other batsmen who have scored two test triple hundreds.

Makhaya Ntini took Sehwag's wicket for 319, he added 10 runs to his overnight score of 309.